Monday, August 29, 2005

Fuel-efficient death traps

The deadly VespaI found this amusing. The Los Angeles Times ran this AP article about the rising popularities of scooters on Friday:
Scooter Popularity Increases as Gas Prices Rise

...As gasoline prices soar, the popularity of peppy, fuel-sipping motor scooters--most easily get 50 miles per gallon and some of the smaller ones get as many as 80 mpg--is soaring. Sales, estimated at 86,000 last year in the U.S., have doubled from 2000, according to the Motorcycle Industry Council.

... Although scooters are economical, the fun factor cannot be overlooked, Christopher said.

"There's just something about a scooter that invites you to jump on it and go," he said.

Dwight Turner, owner of GS MotorWorks in Frisco, Texas, a large seller of imported motor scooters from China, attributed the popularity in part to rising gasoline prices and the coming of age of youngsters who have graduated from foot-propelled sidewalk scooters.

...Small scooters, especially those made in China, South Korea and Taiwan, sell for as little as $800 to $900. Larger scooters, capable of legal highway speeds and more, can cost $4,000 to $6,000.

Scooters, although fun to drive, can be dangerous. Other motorists often don't notice the small two-wheelers, and that can land scooter drivers in the hospital — or the morgue.
Of course, this is the way they end all articles about cars too...


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